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Title: Development of Methodologies for Technology Deployment for Advanced Outage Control Centers that Improve Outage Coordination, Problem Resolution and Outage Risk Management

This research effort is a part of the Light-Water Reactor Sustainability (LWRS) Program, which is a research and development (R&D) program sponsored by Department of Energy (DOE) and performed in close collaboration with industry R&D programs that provides the technical foundations for licensing and managing the long-term, safe, and economical operation of current nuclear power plants. The LWRS program serves to help the U.S. nuclear industry adopt new technologies and engineering solutions that facilitate the continued safe operation of the plants and extension of the current operating licenses. The long term viability of existing nuclear power plants in the U.S. will depend upon maintaining high capacity factors, avoiding nuclear safety issues and reducing operating costs. The slow progress in the construction on new nuclear power plants has placed in increased importance on maintaining the output of the current fleet of nuclear power plants. Recently expanded natural gas production has placed increased economic pressure on nuclear power plants due to lower cost competition. Until recently, power uprate projects had steadily increased the total output of the U.S. nuclear fleet. Errors made during power plant upgrade projects have now removed three nuclear power plants from the U.S. fleet and economic considerations havemore » caused the permanent shutdown of a fourth plant. Additionally, several utilities have cancelled power uprate projects citing economic concerns. For the past several years net electrical generation from U.S. nuclear power plants has been declining. One of few remaining areas where significant improvements in plant capacity factors can be made is in minimizing the duration of refueling outages. Managing nuclear power plant outages is a complex and difficult task. Due to the large number of complex tasks and the uncertainty that accompanies them, outage durations routinely exceed the planned duration. The ability to complete an outage on or near schedule depends upon the performance of the outage management organization. During an outage, the outage control center (OCC) is the temporary command center for outage managers and provides several critical functions for the successful execution of the outage schedule. Essentially, the OCC functions to facilitate information inflow, assist outage management in processing information and to facilitate the dissemination of information to stakeholders. Currently, outage management activities primarily rely on telephone communication, face to face reports of status and periodic briefings in the OCC. Much of the information displayed in OCCs is static and out of date requiring an evaluation to determine if it is still valid. Several advanced communication and collaboration technologies have shown promise for facilitating the information flow into, across and out of the OCC. Additionally, advances in the areas of mobile worker technologies, computer based procedures and electronic work packages can be leveraged to improve the availability of real time status to outage managers.« less
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Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Report Number(s):
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Idaho National Laboratory (INL)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
99 GENERAL AND MISCELLANEOUS Advanced Outage Control Centers; Outage risk management